[LINK] gps on kids

Richard Chirgwin rchirgwin at ozemail.com.au
Wed Jan 14 15:39:56 AEDT 2009

Birch Jim wrote:
> from Ivan Trundle:
> On 13/01/2009, at 10:24 AM, David Lochrin wrote:
>>> I'm with you in the "loss of mind" view. I'm fairly alarmed at the
>>> general trend to replace responsibility and capability with  
>>> technology
>>> and dependency...
>> But on the other hand, the loss of mind for all things technological  
>> allows the rest of the mind to focus on the important things in life.
> When the spear was invented people probably forgot how to wrestle
> gazelles to the ground.  There is probably a web course on this
> somewhere if you feel the need to revive your skills in this area.
> Socrates, who it is believed was illiterate, considered that the new
> fangled practice of writing things down (in the revolutionary new
> phoneme Greek alphabet) would produce a weakening of memory function and
> an incapacity to produce morally balanced arguments.  If you have a look
> at what gets written down you might think there was something in this.
> Anyway, we know what Socrates thought because his pupil, Plato, wrote it
> down.  Plato's pupil Socrates grew up in a world of written language.
> In one of Asimov's books I recall someone feeling a mixture of horror
> and disgust at the idea of someone driving a vehicle on a public road
> under manual control. I don't think the GPS was an issue.
> Jim Birch
Aware of all this ... but just because Socrates was wrong about writing
doesn't mean that all statements arguing a particular deployment of
technology are wrong. And there's a subtle difference between acquiring
a new skill (eg, writing) and delegating an activity to a product (eg
kiddie GPS).

My attitude can be summed up thus: capability equals freedom. If I can
do something, then I don't need to rely on someone else to sell me
something to do it. Being able to cook does not preclude restaurants,
but being unable to cook precludes self-reliance.

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